I only read the first couple pages of this thread, but here's my opinion.
I've seen a lot of mob mentality lately. From people unquestioningly opposing WikiLeaks because their government opposed it to people cheering when the guy who wrote "The Pedophile's Guide to Love" on Amazon got arrested for simply publishing a book, I've come to the conclusion that although most people *say* they want freedom, they really don't. Freedom implies taking responsibility for your own actions, including when you make mistakes. People don't seem to like that.
In my opinion, it would be a huge threat to Bitcoin if the government kept calling it "money laundering" and so forth. Even though US dollars can also be used to purchase illegal things anonymously, if people get angry or scared enough, trying to correct their misconceptions will be like whispering to someone at a rock concert. People here have said that Bitcoin would simply become a black market item and gain even more value. While that may be true, I have no need for a currency that is limited to black market usage. If businesses and ordinary individuals aren't adopting it, what's the point?
I think we need to do something to reach the masses. Maybe a bunch of us pool together to take out a billboard in some heavily populated area like LA. If we can associate Bitcoin with ideas like "currency," "convenient," "replace PayPal," "secure," and so on, that would be a great first step. There's other obvious things that need work too, like making it easier to get Bitcoins. As it stands, the average person isn't going to go through all the trouble. It'd be nice if there were a way to link your bank account to a site (like how PayPal does it) and use that to get Bitcoins instantly.
I find it interesting how you contradict yourself in a few paragraphs.
I've come to the conclusion that although most people *say* they want freedom, they really don't.
I have no need for a currency that is limited to black market usage.
Maybe contradict is harsh, you never actually said you want freedom, just that others don't. Which I agree with. And you never really said you were looking for freedom of exchange either, just that you wouldn't bother with it if it was pushed to the black market.